· The Pulse
By Doug Johnson

  • CBC Radio host and local food enthusiast Adrienne Pan passed away on Saturday at the age of 43. She had hosted the afternoon show Radio Active since 2018 but took leave in May 2021 to battle a serious illness. Pan reported on many different facets of Edmonton, and was mourned by colleagues and many around the city.
  • Concordia University students are upset that the school has eliminated the week-long break between semesters to make up for time lost during negotiations between teaching staff and the institution. An online petition with more than 1,800 signatures is asking for a repeal of the decision, which would see the break shortened to only the duration of the Family Day long weekend.
  • Five Edmonton public schools that are facing high demand are admitting students via lottery. Ward F trustee Julie Kusiek told CBC News a lack of funding for new schools is to blame. "We haven't been provided that in sufficient quantity, and now we're stuck in this situation where we have to figure out where all the students go," she said.
  • Mayor Amarjeet Sohi is "equally frustrated" with the icy state of Edmonton's streets, but noted that city crews are working hard to ensure they are safe and drivable. Crews are out almost every day (minus the extremely cold ones), and some things, like the raw amount of snow the city has seen, are out of their control — though he did concede the city could do better. In a news release, the city said it had called in additional employees on Sunday to prepare for the winter storm.
  • The city's updated Business Licence Bylaw, and associated fee schedule, is now in effect. Key changes include an option for a one- or two-year license, a discount for businesses that renew on time, and updated license categories.
  • Minor Hockey Week wrapped up on Jan. 16, and — despite many hurdles and 20 teams dropping out due to the pandemic — the organizers say that it went smoothly, all things considered.
  • Alberta Justice Minister Kaycee Madu was fined $300 for texting while in a school zone last March. The minister called Edmonton police chief Dale McFee about it, but the chief said that at no point did Madu ever ask for an out. Premier Jason Kenney tweeted late on Jan. 17 that Madu has been placed on leave of absence while an independent review is conducted. "I conveyed to him my profound disappointment in his decision," Kenney said. Sonya Savage will act as Minister of Justice and Solicitor General in the interim.
  • A study that looked at 11 million emergency room visits between 2012 and 2017 in Alberta found that First Nations people receive a lower quality of emergency care.
  • Albertans are fretting about their finances as the pandemic continues, and uncertainty about the future mounts. This is coupled with holiday bills becoming due soon and increases in interest rates.